Intriguing illustrations, classic story structure, and irresistible rabbits add up to a winning Easter-themed treat.

READ REVIEW

WE'RE GOING ON AN EGG HUNT

Four rabbits hunt for Easter eggs in this variation on the familiar children’s call-and-response game about going on a bear or lion hunt.

The attractive cover shows the quartet of rabbits, with three adults and one baby bunny, as they set out on their hunt through a farm and surrounding countryside. The design features double-page spreads with flaps that conceal tiny animals and Easter eggs, numbered in order. These spreads alternate with scenes showing different groups of animals that the rabbits must pass among as their egg hunt continues. With each group met, the simple text includes the familiar refrain: “Can’t go over them. Can’t go under them. Can’t go around them. Got to go through them….” This continues until the rabbits find a huge, blue egg, which folds down to reveal a wolf. “Ruuuuuuuuunnnn!” Back through the ducks, bees, chicks, and lambs, until the rabbits reach their own cozy house and slam a flap door to keep the wolf out. Lunch is chocolate Easter eggs, of course. Vibrant, pastel-hued illustrations draw readers in with amusing rabbits, pleasant country settings, animal sounds, and a just-scary-enough wolf. This cleverly constructed story can be read closely, counting the eggs up to 10 and back down again and enjoying tiny details in the busy illustrations, or at speed with equal satisfaction.

Intriguing illustrations, classic story structure, and irresistible rabbits add up to a winning Easter-themed treat. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: Feb. 14, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-68119-314-4

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Bloomsbury

Review Posted Online: Jan. 17, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2017

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Though it will never usurp Dr. Seuss, it will still find a home where Christian families of faith seek inspirational picture...

WHEN I PRAY FOR YOU

Turner adds another title to his picture-book series that highlights the miracles in the mundane (When God Made Light, 2018, etc.).

In the vein of children’s-bookshelf stalwart Oh, the Places You’ll Go, Turner’s rhyming text includes both prayers and life advice for a growing child, beginning with infancy and moving on to adolescence. At times the rhyme and meter are strained, muddling meaning and making the tempo feel occasionally awkward when read aloud. Overall, though, the book executes its mission, presenting Christian theological truths within the rhythmic inspirational text. For this third series installment Turner’s text is paired with a new illustrator, whose bright illustrations of wide-eyed children have great shelf appeal. While David Catrow’s previous illustrations in the series featured effervescent black protagonists, the child in Barnes’ illustrations appears white, though she occupies an otherwise diverse world. While illustrated as a prayer from a mother for her daughter, the text itself is gender neutral.

Though it will never usurp Dr. Seuss, it will still find a home where Christian families of faith seek inspirational picture books. (Picture book/religion. 3-6)

Pub Date: Feb. 19, 2019

ISBN: 978-0-52565058-4

Page Count: 48

Publisher: WaterBrook

Review Posted Online: Dec. 5, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2019

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A sweet reminder that it’s easy to weather a storm with the company and kindness of friends.

GOOD NIGHT, LITTLE BLUE TRUCK

Is it a stormy-night scare or a bedtime book? Both!

Little Blue Truck and his good friend Toad are heading home when a storm lets loose. Before long, their familiar, now very nervous barnyard friends (Goat, Hen, Goose, Cow, Duck, and Pig) squeeze into the garage. Blue explains that “clouds bump and tumble in the sky, / but here inside we’re warm and dry, / and all the thirsty plants below / will get a drink to help them grow!” The friends begin to relax. “Duck said, loud as he could quack it, / ‘THUNDER’S JUST A NOISY RACKET!’ ” In the quiet after the storm, the barnyard friends are sleepy, but the garage is not their home. “ ‘Beep!’ said Blue. ‘Just hop inside. / All aboard for the bedtime ride!’ ” Young readers will settle down for their own bedtimes as Blue and Toad drop each friend at home and bid them a good night before returning to the garage and their own beds. “Blue gave one small sleepy ‘Beep.’ / Then Little Blue Truck fell fast asleep.” Joseph’s rich nighttime-blue illustrations (done “in the style of [series co-creator] Jill McElmurry”) highlight the power of the storm and capture the still serenity that follows. Little Blue Truck has been chugging along since 2008, but there seems to be plenty of gas left in the tank.

A sweet reminder that it’s easy to weather a storm with the company and kindness of friends. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: Oct. 22, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-328-85213-7

Page Count: 32

Publisher: HMH Books

Review Posted Online: June 23, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2019

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